F-22s intercept Russian bombers, fighters off Alaska coast


The Russian planes were entering the Alaskan Air Defense Identification Zone when they were intercepted, but they remained in worldwide airspace - never entering American or Canadian airspace, according to NORAD.

US F-22 stealth jets intercepted four Russian bombers and two Russian Su-35 fighter jets off the coast of Alaska on Monday, according to a statement from North American Aerospace Defense Command.

Russia's Defense Ministry said on Tuesday that its Tu-95MS bombers made an observation flight along the western coast of Alaska and the Aleutian Islands and were shadowed by F-22 fighter jets.

The incident was confirmed in a separate post to social media by the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), which provided surveillance via an E-3 Sentry airborne early warning and control aircraft.

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Russian military officials acknowledged the incursion into US airspace, saying the aircraft were conducting "scheduled sorties" in worldwide airspace near the country's borders. The Russian planes were "positively identified", the agency wrote.

USA defense forces have intercepted and escorted Russian war planes spotted near Alaskan air space. "Our ability to protect our nations starts with successfully detecting, tracking, and positively identifying aircraft of interest approaching USA and Canadian airspace", O'Shaughnessy said. "We are on alert 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year". "The total flight time exceeded 12 hours", the ministry added. O'Shaughnessy, Commander of NORAD, was cited as saying in a follow-up tweet.

"At no time did the aircraft enter United States or Canadian sovereign airspace", NORAD said in a statement. All civilian craft entering the zone must identify themselves.